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Using Data Encryption

Another way to protect file server data is to use encryption. Windows Server 2008 actually provides two different methods for encrypting data. You can use the Encrypting File System (EFS) or BitLocker Drive Encryption. Let’s take a look at the Encrypting File System first, and then we can return to a discussion of the BitLocker Drive Encryption (which is a new feature of Windows Server 2008).

The Encrypting File System enables you to encrypt data on NTFS volumes using a system of public and private keys. The encryption/decryption process is transparent as files are accessed by network users. EFS can be used to encrypt the contents of individual folders (shares) and even individual files.

Follow these steps to encrypt a file or folder (contents):

1. Open the Computer window (Start, Computer) and then locate the file or folder you want to encrypt.

2. Right-click the file or folder that you want to encrypt, and then select Properties from the shortcut menu.

3. On the General tab of the file or folder’s Properties dialog box, select the Advanced button. The Advanced Attributes dialog box opens (see Figure 13.12).

Figure 13.12. You can encrypt a file or folder.

4. To encrypt the file or folder, select the Encrypt Contents to Secure Data check box. Then click OK to return to the Properties dialog box.

Obviously, encrypting a folder enables you to encrypt all the files in the folder. This means that you can quickly encrypt data files instead of encrypting the files in a folder one at a time.

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